Louis Emerick bares all
Our Press Officer Charlotte caught up with Louis Emerick who plays Horse in the Full Monty about what life is like mixing between theatre and TV.
For anyone, like myself, who doesn’t know about the story give us a little taste of what to expect and who your character is?
The story is in the height of the first recession, Margaret Thatcher has closed the mines and steel works which employed about 10 thousand people, so it’s a whole community, when something like that goes it decimates the whole place. This is 6 guys who are right in the eye of the storm, their whole community has been devastated and our leader Gary has a son and he is getting behind on maintenance payments and so his wife is threatening to stop him from seeing his child. Sort of by accident they are outside the working men’s club and they discover that there are strippers inside but not the kind they are thinking. Male Strippers. It is absolutely packed in there, even Dave’s wife is in there you know unbeknownst to him. And they happen upon this idea, thinking how difficult could that be, we can do that.
My character Horse, the backstory for him is he went up to Sheffield for a sole weekend and never went back to Liverpool. He has been quite lonely as he isn’t from that area, so didn’t have much camaraderie with anybody. His dogs died and he sees the poster and for him it is a way of companionship. He’s probably thinking I had some moves back in the 80’s, I’ve still got it. He doesn’t know how long it’s going to go for or where it’s going to go. He wants to meet like-minded people and communicate with people. I sort of think that after the big night he’s made mates for life.
Why do you think the story still resonates with audiences today?
If you look at the economy, you know two thousand jobs were lost on steel works 2 years ago. So it is still relevant. And as in any good writing, it always stands the test of time. I think people, from their teens, and obviously you weren’t around in the 80’s but you know from your recent history what’s gone on and in some cases what’s happening now. It’s a damn good story and it’s so well written, its main characters are super relatable, they are not gym bunnies they are all different shapes and sizes. They can’t dance a lick, it’s the average person in the street. All the lovely little characters, I mean Annie I love, you know she doesn’t read the flyer properly and shows up to audition only to realize it’s an audition for men. Simon Beaufoy has done a great piece of work, it’s a beautifully made story that takes you on a journey over the two hours.
What is your favourite moment from the piece?
One is certainly with Annie, I am always at the side watching that. There is a lovely scene between Dave and Jean, and Jean doing her cleaning in the conservative club and Dave turns up and brings up the facts that she has a job and he doesn’t. My favourite quote of the night is “you hit the pocket that time” and I will leave you to interpret that as you will. That scene is probably my favourite.
Have you had any embarrassing or memorable auditions?
I went for TV and it was a couple of years ago and there was floods, and I had to come down to London and I kept my agent involved and it was meant to be at 4pm. And it got to like 7pm and the producer was still waiting for me. I was looking at the script and I thought I had it bang on. I was only stressed because of the time, I was sat across from someone I didn’t know and asked them to go through the lines with me. Perfect. Got in the room, and I couldn’t remember anything. The words, were just gone! I emailed the casting director and pass on my thanks that they waited even though I was awful. That was certainly my worst one.
You’ve done some TV as well as theatre. What is the difference between TV and Live Theatre and which do you prefer?
I think I prefer live theatre, I used to say TV pays the mortgage but theatre pays the soul. Even if you are doing soaps which are the quickest turn around, maybe eight weeks until it goes on and by then you’ve kind of become detached as you probably done something in between. I defy any actor or actress to say when they see it going out that they don’t say I would have done that differently. Whereas on stage, every audience is different, responses are different and there is the opportunity to instantly make a change for next time. You get instant feedback and you can see the progress.
If you had to sum up the show in three words what would you pick?
Real, Uplifting, Triumphant
Why should people come to watch the show when it comes to Southampton?
First of all, Mayflower Theatre is an amazing space, it is one of my favourite theatres I love it. There is no better place to sit for two hours and watch a story that will uplift you but also have you on the verge of tears. I can think of no finer place than Mayflower Theatre to watch The Full Monty.